Kampala. Majority of the secondary schools across the country are likely to drop their cutoff points to Senior Five following a decline in last year’s Senior Four results.
However, competition to top schools is likely to remain stiff at a two-day selection that starts today given the many applicants that give them their first choices.
Sr Gladys Kachope, Immaculate Heart Girls School head teacher yesterday said her first priority will be her students who completed their Senior Four from there last year. She said majority of her candidates scored less that Aggregate 20 in the best done eight subjects which makes them eligible for this year’s Senior Five intake.
“We took students with aggregate 20 last year. This time it might go down to 19 and most of our girls scored that and gave us their first choice. We will first consider our own,” Sr Kachope said in an interview.
Although Uganda National Examinations Board (Uneb) reported improved results in the previous year, schools such as Gombe and Kings College Budo which have previously been competitive to join dropped their cutoff points last year.
For instance, Kings College Budo relaxed their admission requirement last year to Aggregate 10 for boys and Aggregate 13 for girls from the previous year’s Aggregate 9 for boys and Aggregate 12 for girls in order to study in Senior Five while Gombe SS dropped its cutoff to Aggregate 20 for girls and Aggregate 18 for boys compared to Aggregate 18 for females and Aggregate 17 for males last year.
Now that Uneb recorded a decline in the pass rate from 91 per cent in the previous year to 87.2 per cent in 2018 UCE exams, there is a high chance for schools to reduce their entry points. The two-day exercise at Uganda Manufacturers’ Association at Nakawa, Kampala will also see candidates to join Primary Teachers’ Colleges, technical institutes and nursing schools admitted.
Dr Safinah Musene, the commissioner Business and Technical education at the Ministry of Education, told Daily Monitor that students must have passed Mathematics and English and two other science based engineering related subjects for technical courses while fashion and design doesn’t have a core subject.
In health related courses, Dr Musene said they will have interviews in March and the students must have passed Physics, Chemistry, Biology, Mathematics and English language with at least a pass grade.
However, Mr Dan Odongo, Uneb executive secretary reported nearly half of the students who sat 2018 UCE failed to get a minimum of pass 8 in the science based subjects.